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Technology 16 September 2019

The Week in Internet News: Antitrust Investigations of Big Tech Heat Up

Grant Gross
By Grant GrossTechnology Reporter

Playing monopoly: Antitrust investigations of large U.S. tech companies are launching, with 48 state attorneys general announcing a Google probe, Salon.com reports. The focus is on Google’s alleged domination of online advertising. Meanwhile, the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee has asked Facebook, Amazon, Apple, and Google parent company Alphabet to turn over documents in its own antitrust probe, CNBC.com says. The House committee seems to be focused on Facebook’s and Google’s recent acquisitions, Amazon’s promotion of its own products, and other issues.

Broadband Island: Anacortes, Washington, on Fidalgo Island near Seattle, is building its own broadband network, Geekwire.com notes. The city is using existing water lines to install fiber optic cable, and the service will cost residential customers $39 per month for 100 Mbps service and $69 for gigabit speeds. 

The Internet of Gasoline: Hackers are increasingly talking about ways to target Internet of Things connected gasoline pumps, ZDNet reports. It’s unclear whether hackers are targeting gas pumps as a way to get cheaper gas or for more destructive reasons. Smart electricity meters are also a target, with the goal of reducing bills, the story suggests.

Free the root: CircleID.com has an opinion piece focused on the Internet’s root and recent concerns about attacks by some nations on a free and open Internet. “The heavy casualties of the current rot at the root include an independent press, free speech, private property rights, open and competitive markets, innovation, along with any modicum of ethics, fairness, and common sense,” writes Greg Thomas, executive director of the Responsible Consumers Alliance.

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Disclaimer: Viewpoints expressed in this post are those of the author and may or may not reflect official Internet Society positions.

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